On October 2nd, Aurora participated in a videoconference in the context of the IAU HESD initiative: Higher Education & Research for Sustainable Development. IAU has set up an initiative for each of the 17 sustainable development goals. This meeting, which was coordinated by the IAU secretariat, was about SDG 17: Partnerships for the goals.
The other SDGs in this IAU-HESD initiative, are led by universities around the world. Two of them are Aurora member universities: the University of Gothenburg leading on SDG 8 (decent work and economic growth) and the University of Bergen leading on SDG 14 (life below water).
The IAU intends to focus this activity on the one hand on advocacy, being the voice of higher education where governments and international organisations discuss the high policy of the SDGs. In that context, it seeks embedding in the Global Action Programme on Education for Sustainable Development and also a place at the table at the High Level Political Forum on sustainable development (9-18 July 2019, New York).
On the other hand, IAU wants to play a role in connecting the universities and groupings of universities that have a focus on sustainable development and in this way bring sustainable development within higher education and research on a higher level.
Among the organisations participating in this initiative are more general groupings of universities (in Spain, in Europe, in the Americas) as well as groupings of universities with a focus on societal impact and sustainable development (the Copernicus Alliance and Aurora). Also the association of green offices in universities rootAbility forms part.
IAU is planning for a next meeting on the IAU-HESD initiative for SDG 17 Partnerships for the Goals in January 2019 in Paris. In a videoconference before that, more specific targets for the group will be drafted, both in terms of external advocacy and in terms of achieving better cooperation for enhanced sustainable development results among universities/ university networks and in cooperation with other societal actors (employers, government, NGO’s, media, etc.).